Retail Rents Are Highest in Hipster Haven Williamsburg, Followed by Fulton Mall



    Brooklyn’s hottest retail strip is Williamsburg’s Bedford Avenue, according to a report released yesterday by the Real Estate Board of New York.

    Between Grand Street and North 12th Street, the asking price for renting a retail space on Bedford Avenue averaged $347 per square foot in the third quarter. (Pictured above is Bedford Avenue and North 4th Street.)

    Those in the know won’t be surprised: Longtime mom and pop shops have closed and chain stores have come in. The street is slated to get both a highly anticipated Whole Foods and a highly anticipated Apple Store in the next year.


    Whole Foods under construction on Bedford Avenue

    Dunkin Donuts, Starbucks, J.Crew, and Madewell recently opened on Bedford or nearby side streets, joining American Apparel. Trader Joe’s also signed a lease closer to the water, and Ralph Lauren is also planning a boutique on North 3rd Street.

    The second-priciest stretch of Brooklyn retail? Fulton Mall. The street has been a shopping mecca for over a century — since the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge, in fact.

    In recent years, the mall has gone more upscale, with national brands opening among the mom and pop nail salons and sneaker stores. The average retail rent on Fulton Mall is currently $287 per square foot.

    But with 6,412 new residential units slated to come on line in Downtown Brooklyn in the next four years, we’re betting that Fulton Mall gives Bedford Avenue a run for the money. All of those new downtown residents will need a place to shop.

    Whole Foods’ nemesis Trader Joe’s recently signed on as an anchor tenant at City Point. Macy’s is planning a makeover of its historic Downtown Brooklyn flagship, which started out as Abraham & Strauss.

    Surprisingly, rents on Court Street in Cobble Hill — another stretch that has seen an influx of national brands such as Trader Joe’s and Rag & Bone — are less than half the rents in Williamsburg.

    Brooklyn retail rents are still a relative bargain.  To put these rents in perspective, consider prices on some of the world’s priciest boulevards, such as 5th Avenue and Madison Avenue in Manhattan, run upwards of $1,000 per square foot.

    Here’s a rundown of average price per square foot on Brooklyn’s top shopping streets:

    Franklin Street between Meserole Avenue and Commercial Street: $63
    Manhattan Avenue between Driggs Avenue and Ash Street: $65

    North 6 Street between Driggs Avenue and Kent Avenue: $208
    North 4 Street between Driggs Avenue and Kent Avenue: $153
    Grand Street between Havemayer Street and Kent Avenue: $110

    Washington Street, Front Street, Water Street, Main Street combined: $107

    Brooklyn Heights
    Montague Street between Hicks Street and Cadman Plaza: $150

    Downtown Brooklyn
    Fulton Mall between Boerum Place and Flatbush Avenue: $287

    Prospect Heights
    Flatbush Avenue between 5th Avenue and Grand Army Plaza: $102

    Cobble Hill
    Court Street between Atlantic Avenue and Carroll Street: $162
    Smith Street between Atlantic Avenue and Carroll Street: $121

    Park Slope
    7th Avenue between Union Street and 9th Street: $86
    5th Avenue between Union Street and 9th Street: $81

    Bay Ridge
    86th Street between 4th Avenue and Fort Hamilton Parkway: $77

    The data used to generate the report came from the available retail listings of REBNY brokers on the Brooklyn and Retail committees. This is the first Brooklyn retail study by the real estate trade association. You can read the full report here.

    Brooklyn’s retail scene has been growing along with its creative, manufacturing and residential boom.

    [Photos: Cate Corcoran]

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